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3 tips that really work to keep your child free from illness

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When your little one starts pre-school or primary school, his immune system may get overwhelmed by a host of nasty viruses because it is still developing. This article tells you how you can help your child fight off those bugs and germs...

It’s such a big milestone when your little one starts kindergarten or primary school. Seeing him in his uniform brings a tear to your eye and a proud beat to your heart as you give him your blessings for this journey of learning he is about to embark on.

However, as your child starts mingling with other kids in his new school, he is also exposed to a multitude of germs. Combined with the fact that your little one's immune system is still developing, you may notice that he falls ill quite regularly.

While health professionals say this is quite normal, you may struggle with inadequate leave credits to look after your sick child and expensive paediatrician bills. Repeatedly missing school is of course quite disruptive to your child’s education.

It is stressful to not be able to completely stop your little one from getting sick once he starts kindergarten or Primary One. But you can give him the best fighting chance of warding off illness as much as possible with these three tips.

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Good hand hygiene can ward off a host of illnesses in your child after he starts school

1. Teach your kids good hygiene

One of the most common ways kids get colds is by rubbing their mouth, nose or eyes with their unwashed hands that have been exposed to a cold virus. Because of this, it’s so important to teach your little one correct hand hygiene, as well as classroom hygiene in general.

Your child should wash his hands with soap and water for as long as it takes to sing the “Happy Birthday” song. He should scrub between his fingers, his palms, around his nails and the back of his hands. Ideally, the paper towel that he uses to dry his hands should be used to turn off the tap.

Advice your little one to wash and dry his hands like this after using the toilet and before eating. Remind him that he should cough/ sneeze into the crook of his elbow, rather than into his palms. But if he forgets, then he should wash or sanitise his hands as soon as possible.

Your child should also not be sharing his lunch, snacks or water with other children in the class. Teach your child this simple rule: if you put the item in your mouth, keep it to yourself.

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A good night's sleep can help your little one stay healthy and also benefits his learning in many ways.

2. Make sure your little one gets adequate sleep

Did you know that if your child doesn’t get enough sleep, this can actually negatively impact his learning, health and wellbeing?

The Health Promotion Board of Singapore (HPB) says that while your little one is sleeping, his brain is hard at work facilitating memory, learning and problem-solving skills.

Sleep also assists in healing and repairing your child’s heart and blood vessels and  supports his healthy growth and development by boosting muscle mass and repairing cells and tissue.

Experts say that pre-schoolers between the ages of three to five years should get about ten to 12 hours of sleep a day. Primary-schoolers (six to 12 years old) should average nine to ten hours of sleep daily.

On the next page, find out how you can boost your child's immunity and gut health with probiotics, as well as information on how you can win over $100 worth of Blackmores health products for you and your child!

Ages & Stages Health Preschool Toddler